The state of Florida will play host to one less bowl game when the 2017 postseason rolls around.
The American Athletic Conference, which created the Miami Beach Bowl and has owned and operated the event since 2014, announced Friday that the game has been purchased by ESPN. The AAC will continue its affiliation with the bowl game; it’s expected Conference USA, the MAC and Sun Belt will do the same.
The conference also confirmed that the game will no longer be played at Marlins Park or in the state of Florida. A new venue will be announced at a later date, although the state of Texas is the early favorite to land the bowl.
“We are proud of the postseason opportunities that we have been able to provide to student-athletes through our founding of the Miami Beach Bowl, and we appreciate the relationships that we have built with the Miami Marlins, Marlins Park and the cities of Miami and Miami Beach,” said AAC commissioner Mike Aresco said in a statement. “This transfer makes sense on many levels. We are excited to enhance our overall relationship with ESPN and to continue our affiliation with the bowl.”
Memphis (2014), Tulsa (2016) and USF (2015) have previously represented the AAC in the game. The first two won their matchups with BYU and Central Michigan, respectively, while the latter dropped a 10-point decision to Western Kentucky.